No discussion of Broadway could be complete without a consideration of Broadway's quintessential playwright, Neil Simon. In the past thirty-one years, he has had twenty-eight plays on Broadway. More than once, he has had four plays running simultaneously. His string of successes surpasses anything in the history of the American theatre. In fact, in financial terms, his successes have surpassed the combined career totals of all the other playwrights in this volume. In spite of this, it was not until the 1980s, with the appearance of what has been called the "Brighton Beach Trilogy" - Brighton Beach Memoirs, Biloxi Blues, and Broadway Bound - that Simon has been taken seriously as a writer. Broadway Bound, in particular, struck many critics as a departure. Up until that point Simon was politely, but firmly dismissed as a writer of "gag-infested" comedies.